Student and Alumni Update: Winter 2018

  • Conducting alumnus Tigran Arakelyan
    Conducting alumnus Tigran Arakelyan (Photo: courtesy Tigran Arakelyan).
  • Jocelyn Moon
    Jocelyn Moon, PhD candidate in Ethnomusicology and Fulbright Research Award recipient (Photo: courtesy Jocelyn Moon).
  • Graduate choral conducting student Elizabeth Cherland recently served as guest conductor of the Vancouver Chamber Choir Photo: Courtesy Elizabeth Cherland).
    Graduate choral conducting student Elizabeth Cherland (second from left) recently served as guest conductor of the Vancouver Chamber Choir (Photo: Courtesy Elizabeth Cherland).

Current and former UW Music students are making an impact at the UW and beyond, winning competitions, appointments, honors, and other recognition and advancing their life’s work worldwide.

Tigran Arakelyan (’16 DMA, Orchestral Conducting)  is the Music Director of Bainbridge Island Youth Orchestras, the Federal Way Youth Symphony Orchestra, and serves as the Artistic Director/Conductor of the Port Townsend Community Orchestra. He is a finalist for the position of Music Director of the Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra.

Music Ed PhD students Will Coppola, Chris Mena, and Skuli Gestsson  have initiated a grant-funded project on “testimonio,” or collective song-writing, for students at the Yakama Nation Tribal School.

Jocelyn Moon, PhD candidate in Ethnomusicology and Fulbright Research Award recipient, has recently returned from a year’s fieldwork in Zimbabwe. She is now writing her dissertation and has re-established the UW Zimarimba Club for interested students.

Solmaz Shakerifard, PhD student in Ethnomusicology, delivered a well-received paper, “De-Colonizing Ethnomusicology,” at the annual meeting of the Society for Ethnomusicology in Denver this past October.

Ne Myo Aung, (’15 MA, Ethnomusicology) has been appointed Director of the Gitameit Music Institute, in Yangon, Myanmar.

Claire Anderson, PhD candidate in Ethnomusicology, was contracted by Smithsonian Folkways to work on a six-week project in study of current and prospective education-based projects of the archive and label. She worked under the direction of former Music Education student Huib Schippers, now curator-director of Smithsonian Folkways. She continues her year of fieldwork in Sweden and  recently published an article on Bluegrass in Sweden in the Lund University magazine in Malmö.

Jamie Kelley (’15 PhD Music Ed) has accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Music at the University of North Texas; he previously was an assistant professor of music education at Florida international University.

Jason Yust (’07 PhD, Music Theory), assistant professor of music theory at Boston University, presented at the 2017 meetings of the Society for Music Theory. His paper: “Generalized Trichordal and Tetrachordal Tonnetze: Geometry and Analytical Applications.” He was recently appointed associate editor of the Journal of Mathematics and Music.

Chris Stover (’09 PhD, Music Theory) has accepted a position as assistant professor of music at Arizona State University after teaching for several years at the New School in New York. Recent publications include a chapter on jazz theory in the Norton Guide to Teaching Music Theory and an article, “Time, Territorialization, and Improvised Spaces,” in Music Theory Online. He was among alumni presenting at the 2017 meetings of the Society for Music Theory. His topic: “Analyzing Improvised Music−Dance Interactions.” Stover also served as scholar-in-residence at the University of Oslo this past October.

Rob Schultz (’09, PhD Music Theory) was one of a small group of scholars who founded the online journal Analytical Approaches to World Music and organized several conferences devoted to this burgeoning area of research. He was assistant professor of music at the University of Kentucky from 2013 until his death, one day before his 39th birthday, in May 2016.

Brad Osborn (’10 PhD, Music Theory), assistant professor of music at the University of Kansas, published Everything in Its Right Place: Analyzing Radiohead (2016 Oxford University Press).

Rich Pellegrin (’10 PhD, Music Theory) is assistant professor of music at the University of Florida. At the 2017 meetings of the Society for Music Theory, he organized the session “Considering Coltrane: Analytical Perspectives after Fifty Years,” among the contents of which was his paper entitled “Chromatic Third Relationships and Coltrane’s Path to ‘Free’ Jazz.”

Orit Hilewicz (’11 MA, Music Theory) received her PhD from Columbia University in 2017 and has accepted a position as assistant professor of music theory at the Eastman School of Music.

Organ studies graduate student Wyatt Smith participated in the Canadian International Organ Competition this fall, the largest international organ competition in the world. Smith competed as one of 20 organists (selected from 56), representing twelve countries. The competition was held over the course of eleven days in three rounds at various landmark churches in historic Montréal, Québec, Canada. Dr. Carole Terry, UW Professor of Organ and Harpsichord, served as one of the nine members of the international jury over the course of this competition.

Percussion Studies graduate student Emerson Wahl attended the New Music of the Point Festival this past summer, “It was a life-changing experience for him,” says chair Bonnie Whiting,“firing his desire to make experimental music.” Wahl received generous support from the School of Music to cover travel expenses for the festival.

Taryn O’Keefe (MA, Music Education plus Certification) and Irene Chen (MM, Piano Performance plus Certification) have taken teaching positions in the Lake Washington School District, with Taryn teaching band, orchestra, and choir to 6th-12th graders at the International Community School and Irene teaching general music and beginning orchestra at Rockwell Elementary. John Aguilar (BM, Music Education) was hired at Seattle’s new Robert Eagle Staff Middle School, where he is teaching multiple bands and is serving on the design leadership team for the school.

Sarah Bost (’17 MA, Music Ed) serves as band teacher at Seattle Preparatory School. Erin Howard (’16 MA, Music Ed) teaches band in the Granite Falls School District and also serves as assistant conductor of Seattle’s Rainbow City Band.

Music Education doctoral student Taina Lorenz has been appointed editorial assistant for the Journal of Research in Music Education. PhD candidate Anita Kumar presented research on adult community ensembles at the Music and Lifelong Learning Symposium at Ithaca College and the International Society for Music Education Conference in Glasgow, Scotland. PhD Candidate Cory Meals was appointed assistant professor of music education at the University of Houston.

Former students of Prof. Timothy Salzman report recent promotions and achievements. Dr. Erin Bodnar recently accepted an appointment as Director of Bands/Assistant Professor of Music at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. Dr. Vu Nguyen has just received tenure and promotion to Associate Professor/Director of Bands at the University of Indianapolis. In his role as a Major in the United States Air Force Reserve, he recently led the combined USAF Band of the Golden West and Air National Guard Band of the West Coast in a performance at the California Music Educators conference. Dr. Christopher Chapman, Director of Bands at Oregon State University, has received the Thomas R Meehan Excellence in Teaching Award from the OSU College of Liberal Arts. He also recently received the Oregon State Music Education Association’s Outstanding Music Educator Award. Jianan Cheng, MM grad in wind conducting and currently a teaching assistant in the DMA program in orchestral conducting at the Cincinnati Conservatory, was appointed to serve last summer as assistant conductor of the National Music Festival, Chestertown, Maryland. During the 2019/2020 season she will be a conducting fellow for the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Dr. Eric Smedley who this past spring received tenure and promotion to Associate Professor at the Jacobs School of Music of Indiana University. Eric serves as Associate Director of Bands at IU. Dr. Linda Moorhouse was recently elected to the office of Vice President of the prestigious American Bandmasters Association. Linda currently serves as Associate Director of the School of Music and Senior Associate Director of Bands at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana.  Richard Clary is currently serving as President of the College Band Directors National Association. Clary, who served as teaching assistant for the UW Concert Band program from 1990-1993, is Professor of Music and Director of Wind Studies at Florida State University. 

Choral Conducting DMA student Jennifer Rodgers was recently named artistic director of the Everett Chorale, a 52-year old community concert choir of about 60 voices. Her appointment begins in July 2018. Rogers also celebrated her first published article, "A Language That Resonates: Building a Pedagogy of Resonance for Adult Avocational Singers in a Choral Setting," which appears in the April 2018 volume of Choral Journal . 

Graduate choral conducting student Elizabeth Cherland recently served as guest conductor of the Vancouver Chamber Choir during the group's annual conducting symposium. 

Two UW Voice students earned awards in October from the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) and the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Lauren Kulesa, a first year masters student in vocal performance, performed at the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions (MONC) and received an Encouragement Award for the Northwest Region. Gemma Balinbin, a second year masters student in vocal performance, was a regional finalist of the National Association of Teachers of Singing Artist Awards (NATSAA) Competition. 

Several UW Music students and alumni are presenting at the biannual conference of the Northwest Region of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) in Portland this month, including Sarah Riskind, Jeffrey Larkin, Jeremy Morada, Meg Stohlmann, Leann Conley-Holcom, Jeremiah Selvey, and Wendy Moy. Topics range from "Liberating Singers with Choral Improvisation"  to "(Re)imagining the Changing Voice: Adolescence to Senescence." In other UW conference appearances, the UW Chamber Singers perform at the conference under the direction of Prof. Geoffrey Boers. 

Alumna Emily Murphy, who graduated from the UW in 2006 with a masters degree in Musicology, has joined the music faculty at Boston College, teaching fundamentals of music theory, a harmony course, and keyboard skills. 

 Alumnus Lincoln Ballard ('10 PhD Music History) has published his first book. The Alexander Scriabin Companion: History, Performance, and Lore (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017). The volume serves as a primer for the Russian mystic's music, providing background information on Scriabin's biography, discussions of his musical and philosophical influences, overviews of his major works for solo piano and for orchestra, and critical essays on four major topics in his reception history. Ballard's co-author, Matthew Bengtson (Assistant Professor of Piano Literature at the University of Michigan), addresses issues of performance practice. "This promises to be the go-to guide for students, music lovers, and pianists who are interested in Scriabin's music and legacy," Ballard notes.